Vancouver 2010 Olympic officials present bid book to IOC

Vancouver was the first of three cities vying for the 2010 Winter Olympic Games to present their bid book to the International Olympic Committee.

Bid chairman Jack Poole and Vancouver mayor Larry Campbell delivered 100 copies of the 460-page document to IOC officials Thursday at the organization's head office in Lausanne, Switzerland.

Vancouver is competing for the 2010 Games against Salzburg, Austria, and Pyeongchang, South Korea. The IOC will decide on the winning bid in July.

The deadline for submission is Friday, but Poole said they decided to hand in the bid early so that he and Campbell could visit Torino, Italy -- the site of the 2006 Winter Games -- and Lillehammer, Norway, the site of the '94 Winter Games.

"The reason we were there (Thursday) ... is to make it possible to visit Torino and Lillehammer and make it possible for the mayor to be back at council Tuesday in Vancouver," Poole said during a conference call from Torino.

While in Torino, Vancouver bid officials will discuss how that city will handle problems such as accommodating the thousands of athletes and visitors. And in Lillehammer, Campbell and Poole will see how officials there capitalized on the 1994 Winter Games.

The newly elected Campbell said it was important that both he and Poole were in Lausanne to deliver the bid book together.

"I believe in talking to the IOC this demonstrates the commitment we have," he said.

However, one hurdle Campbell and Poole both must overcome is a public vote in Vancouver on Feb. 22 on whether the city should stage the Games.

"We obviously discussed that (with IOC) and the words that they used were that it is not something the IOC would impose on any city ... but they are not at all unhappy with the fact that we are," Poole said.

"I think they're comfortable that we're going to work hard to get a good result."

with files from Canadian Press